News blog for Seattle's Maple Leaf neighborhood

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Caper the cat missing since Thursday

July 13th, 2014 by Mike

Update July 16th:”Caper’s home! Just showed up on our doorstep, hungry and dirty, but for now, capers escapades are over!


Diana emails: “Our cat, Caper, has not come home since Thursday afternoon. He is SUPER friendly and an orange/cream tabby.

We live on Northeast 84th Street in the 500 block. If you see him, please let us know and email us at

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Australian Shepherd found in Maple Leaf today

July 11th, 2014 by Mike

Noon update: Home now.


The Maple Leaf Veterinary Care Center emails:

“I’m forwarding an email regarding a good Samaritan who found an Australian shepherd wandering in the Maple Leaf area.

“If you could please post this on the blog in the hopes the owner will see him and bring him home that would be much appreciated.”

Other information: blue eyes, 19 pounds. Found this morning at Northeast 80th Street and Fourth Avenue Northeast.

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Water, progress and fuming in Maple Leaf?

July 10th, 2014 by Mike

Here’s something … interesting.

A reader forwards an email from the Museum of History & Industry.

The Future of Seattle’s Maple Leaf Neighborhood: Water, Progress, and Conflict.

It’s an invitation to walking tours here on Saturday, July 26th, and Wednesday, Aug. 6th.

When Seattle Parks and Seattle Utilities decided to cover the Maple Leaf reservoir, they hit a home run: a beautiful, innovative park. So why are some North Seattle residents fuming?

Join Historian Roger van Oosten on an informative, insightful and fun tour of the Maple Leaf reservoir park and neighboring environs. You’ll discover the sometimes awkward, sometimes progressive and sometimes successful collision of growing density, open spaces and neighborhood rights.


Oh, and you have to buy your way in.

There’s a tour from 10 a.m. to noon  on July 26, and another on August 6 from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m.

Meet at the corner of  Northeast 82nd Street and 14th Avenue Northeast.

Cost: MOHAI Members $15; General $20.

Apparently, MOHAI does this periodically.

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Two nearby news items – a shooting and a TBM (the T stands for tunnel)

July 9th, 2014 by Mike

Two press released arrived this afternoon. One is on a shooting nearby in Victory Heights. The other is the launch of Brenda – the Tunnel Boring Machine heading for the University District.

From Seattle Police:

Police are investigating after a man was wounded in a shooting in the Victory Heights neighborhood Wednesday afternoon following a dispute over an apparent drug debt.

Police responded to the 1700 block of Northeast 103rd Street, where they found the victim, who had been shot in the foot. Medics transported the man to Harborview Medical Center with non-life-threatening injuries.

At the scene, witnesses told officers two men had fled the scene in a black Lincoln Town Car. Police are now searching for the two men, described as a white male, 5’8, wearing a black tank top, and a white male, 6’0, wearing a blue dress shirt.

From Sound Transit:

The first of two tunnel boring machines that will dig new twin light rail tunnels from the Northgate neighborhood in Seattle to the University of Washington began mining today.

That would be Brenda. You can read more here.

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Northgate library needs homework helpers

July 9th, 2014 by Mike

When school starts again in September, The Seattle Public Library hopes to have volunteers ready to help with K-12 homework in 11 of the library’s branches.

The Northgate branch, 10548 Fifth Ave. N.E., is looking for helpers starting Sept. 8th. (The Green Lake branch isn’t offering the service.) Anyone interested should apply by July 25th. Volunteer application can be downloaded from

Volunteers will be scheduled for weekly two-hour shifts. Those who cannot make weekly commitments can be scheduled as substitutes at least twice a month for a minimum of four months.

Applicants must have completed at least one year of college or vocational school and have strong English literacy and/or mathematics skills. Retired teachers are particularly encouraged to apply.

For more information click here.

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The mystery bagpipers of Maple Leaf Park

July 9th, 2014 by Mike

Who are those guys?

And gals.
Two gals. Five guys. On Tuesday eve.
(You might have to let the video load. It’s big.)

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Neighbor reports suspicious activity over weekend

July 7th, 2014 by Mike

This email came in around 10 a.m.:

We live on Eighth Avenue Northeast at Northeast 104th Street and were out of town for the long weekend.

Our neighbors spotted three African-American males with backpacks walking down the street, one of whom started walking down our driveway. He spotted the other two going down 105th. He came over and questioned the guy on our property who apparently refused to talk. He told him he was going to call the cops and the guy just shrugged his shoulders.

Our neighbor did call the cops and there already happened to be a patrol car in the neighborhood. The cop stopped the guy and questioned him. He claimed his bus pass had blown out of his hand which is why he was on our property. (Obviously a lie.) The cops unfortunately couldn’t keep him on suspicion alone.

Glad we have awesome neighbors but it’s unfortunate that we have to be worried about going out of town. Please keep an eye out and continue to report any suspicious activity in the neighborhood.

Below is the 911 Incident Response Map for much of the weekend. This particular response is the top icon that looks like Sauron’s Eye. It reads “104XX BLOCK OF 8 AV NE. Final Call Type Category: SUSPICIOUS CIRCUMSTANCES.”

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On the morning of July 5, a brush fire at the park

July 5th, 2014 by Mike

At 8:22 a.m. firefighters from Engine 16 were dispatched to a brush fire at Maple Leaf Reservoir Park.

The fire was on the park’s southeast side, roughly at Northeast 82nd Street and 14th Avenue Northeast. The smoke could be seen from anywhere in the park.

There was plenty of debris left from Friday night’s unofficial July 4th fireworks at the park, but the cause of the fire hadn’t been determined.

One firefighter said he did not find fireworks in the ashes, but speculated a cigarette butt might have started the smoldering blaze, which covered several feet yards.

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Happy Independence Day (plus ducks!)

July 4th, 2014 by Mike

Happy Fourth of July! From Maple Leaf Life (and the Dog Oasis).

Also, earlier this week Bobbi sent us photos and this note:

“Nature in Northgate:

“Hi, I live at Northeast 95th Street and Fifth Avenue Northeast and was walking to the Northgate Transit Center along First Avenue (Wednesday) when I came across this entourage – mother and 10 ducklings.

We helped them cross the street into a drainage pipe by light rail construction so they could walk up to the creek!

“I’m calling this drainage pipe the duck portal. The construction guys said there is also a beaver living by the drainage pipe.”

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July 1st, 2014 by Mike

Updated: Weather service says Sea-Tac has now hit 93 94 degrees. At Maple Leaf Life South we hit 93 at 4:04 p.m.

Update 4 p.m.: 92 degrees here (and at Sea-Tac), which the National Weather Service says is a record high for this date.

Today – July 1st – is the hot day of the week. Perhaps of the month. Certainly of the year so far.

At 1:30 p.m. it’s 85 degrees at Maple Leaf Life South. That was forecast to be the high for the day, but the day’s got a ways to go.

As Cliff Mass says in his One Day Heat Wave post:  “Make sure your fans are working.”

(He updated late this morning to say: “A lot of folks, particularly away from the water, should see 90F today.”)

He also says the University of Washington’s probcasts system prediction tool is calling for “an amazing” 92 degrees on the campus this afternoon.

Wednesday? 79 81 degrees, dropping to 72 for Independence Day.

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Summer reading program for students begins at library branches

July 1st, 2014 by Mike

This year’s summer reading program at The Seattle Public Library has started and lasts 10 weeks, to Sunday, Aug. 31st.

On this, the 95th year the library has offered free summer activities to mitigate the summer slide in academics, it has partnered with the Pacific Science Center for a special emphasis on science, technology, engineering, art and math (STEAM).

A lot of information is available online, in addition to news releases about the programs for children and for teens/tweens .

Here are specific links to neighborhood branches and programs:

Northgate Branch events for children:

In addition, an “Aesop’s Fables” children’s program is being held at the Northgate Community Center rather than at the Northgate Branch.

Northgate Branch events for teens:

Green Lake Branch events for children:

Green Lake Branch events for teens:

NOTE that all libraries are closed for Independence Day, Friday, July 4th.

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Crow attacks and other neighborhood news of the past week

July 1st, 2014 by Mike

We’ve got crime and stolen packages, feral cats and a found iPod – but first, the crows!

Anyone trekking to the north entrance to Maple Leaf Reservoir Park will notice.

A pair of crows with a nest at 12th Avenue Northeast and Northeast 89th Street are ardently defending their young – to the point of dive-bombing passers by.

Our crows are actually a little late – most chicks have fledged by mid-June.

Our news partner The Seattle Times has mapped more than 50 such crow attacks in the area and created a map. That coverage is here.

In other news:

Art emails over the weekend:

This morning, in broad daylight, at about 8 a.m. (Saturday morning) someone tried to steal our car.

They easily got into the locked car and managed pick the lock on “the club” (the old one with a double-sided key)

They were unable to get the car started but took a few bags of stuff out of the trunk.

This was on Northeast 100th Street near 15th Avenue Northeast.

We reported it to the police.

The officer said the club was a good deterrent but not 100% effective.

I just wanted to let the neighborhood folks know to keep their eyes open especially since it was in broad daylight.

And Greg emailed last week:

On my way home today I saw an individual removing packages from a neighbors house on Northeast 82nd Street and Eighth Avenue Northeast. I followed them and got their license plate.

I decided to loop back to the home to see if the neighbor was home-the individuals had returned and were clearly interested in whether I was observing them.  Upon reporting it to SPD they informed me that (particular) car has a high number of “hits” when it comes to reports of suspicious activity in this and surrounding areas. But they have yet to apprehend them.

He described the car as a black Saturn VUE SUV, and the occupants as two Hispanic males and a white male with a shaved head “SPD says these crimes along with home invasions spike in the good weather so folks should keep a look out.”

Meanwhile, Jessie reports a found iPod on Saturday. “We found a black iPod in front of our house on Northeast 96th Street between Eighth Avenue Northeast and Roosevelt Way Northeast. It belongs to someone named Nicholas but it is locked. We would like to find the owner; can you please post something on the blog and if they can unlock it they can have it back.”

Finally, we have a neighbor, Sharon, with a plea for the Friends of Campus Cats Jumble Sale. (more…)

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Fireworks viewing July 4 at Reservoir Park?

June 29th, 2014 by Mike

Deb emails:

Some friends and I thought about trying to watch fireworks around the city from the Reservoir Park.

Since it’s the highest point in Seattle we thought perhaps we could see something, but I wanted to check with Maple Leaf Life if anything more is known about this. Is any activity planned at the park, and do you think it’s possible to see Seattle (and Bellevue?) fireworks from there?

We know it may not be the best view in the city but it would be convenient to see at least something!

In past years people have often gathered on the southeast side of the old (lower) park to watch the Seattle fireworks. We don’t recall being able to see across the lake to Eastside fireworks.

The view should be spectacularly better from the new Maple Leaf Reservoir Park.

We haven’t yet heard about any organized viewing parties. But the forecast for July 4 is great: Mostly sunny, with a high near 70 and an overnight low of 53 degrees.

Incidentally, we are a high hill – but not the highest

Maple Leaf tops out at 466 feet above sea level on Roosevelt Way Northeast next to the Blue Saucer.

PS: The view from the park is good – but the video above was taken from a houseboat dock on the east side of Lake Union.

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Lost on 17th Ave. N.E. – Cougar the Cat

June 22nd, 2014 by Mike

Josh emails: “I live on Northeast 86th Street & 17th Avenue Northeast.  My cat Cougar has been outside since Wednesday night. She usually doesn’t go far and will come back in the house but has not done so yet.

“She is all black with a pink collar. She is very skittish and has a distinct meow when scared. She will be vocal when she is in a safe place like a bush or under a porch.

“If you see her, call Josh at 206-719-6937. Thanks!”

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Maple Leaf crime update since late April

June 21st, 2014 by Mike

Late last week Michael emailed:

Hey, just a heads-up that our house on 15th Avenue Northeast and Northeast 97th Street was broken into via a kicked-in basement window on Tuesday the 17th of June.

Small LED TV, jewelry, purses (thankfully emptied of their contents), a NOOK and a small amount of cash were stolen.

Seattle PD responded and cleared the house and filed a report. One of the responding officers said August tends to be the worst month.

Please be attentive and don’t be afraid to call 911 if you see suspicious people/vehicle(s).

The map at right is of property crimes in the neighborhood since our last report in late April. Specifically, it shows home and commercial burglaries and car thefts/car prowls. (And possibly stolen bicycles, because we forgot to uncheck that box on the police crime map.)

The map also emphasizes a point another neighbor emailed about earlier in the month.

“So you’ll know, the northwest portion of Maple Leaf is quite prone to crime and is probably the base from which many car prowlers and burglars originate.”

Crime in the Northgate area is something we’ve reported on often. For example, “Home intruder reported, plus an amazing 38 crime incidents near Northgate,” or “And the best place in town for a kid to get arrested is … the mall!

On the map, the circles in that area show 2, 6 and 18 individual reports, almost all of stolen cars or car prowls.

That’s one sort of crime this neighbor is concerned about.

“Last Thursday, June 12th, I saw a tenant at the Olympic View apartments (9800 Fifth Ave. N.E.) working on his late-model Toyota Tundra pickup, parked in the carport area of the building. We talked a bit and he said that the system for sound and navigation (telematics) had been stolen out of his truck, at around 3 to 3:30 p.m.

“I would encourage you to mention this occurrence in the Maple Leaf Life blog, as there have been similar incidents at this address.”

His concerns run more deeply, though.

“In September of 2008, several – three or four – young guys tried to steal the sound system out of a truck, south of where I live. The owner of the truck, who himself was just 19 years old, came out and could see this occurring from the balcony of his apartment, so he grabbed a rifle.


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